Thinking about resilience, performativity, and mental health in fieldwork training

Many disciplines now encourage fieldwork of their postgraduate students, including but not limited to International Development, Media Studies, Gender Studies, Sociology, and Geography. For the purposes of this blog, however, I will focus on Anthropology, which more often than not requires long term fieldwork as part of the completion of a doctoral degree. Fieldwork in... Continue Reading →

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Above and beyond? Rethinking our criteria for ‘teaching excellence’

A couple of months ago I attended an awards ceremony at the LSE to receive a Class Teacher Award for my work with undergraduate students in the Department of Sociology. This was an unexpected accolade and, truth be told, one of the highlights of my year – second only, I would say, to the incredible... Continue Reading →

Emancipating education

 « Je crois que Dieu a créé l’âme humaine capable de s’instruire seule et sans maître. » (Joseph Jacotot, 1770-1840, epitaph) Have you ever had students telling you that they would have never found, by themselves, the solutions you have just presented? And have you noticed that, when they are left to express themselves, they... Continue Reading →

Turning the LSE Upside Down: reflections on movements to decolonise the university

At the end of this year’s Lent Term, LSE unveiled a new campus sculpture, “The World Turned Upside Down,” a political globe with the North and South Poles reversed. While the globe clearly wanted to communicate attentiveness to the power of images and their capacity to produce and shape ways of viewing the world, it ironically ended up reinforcing the hierarchies it purported to criticize, demonstrating how important it is to engage with decolonising projects in universities across the world.

A justified rant about bureaucracy in UK academia

Image source: http://www.jamesgmartin.center/2017/06/administrative-bloat-campus-academia-shrinks-students-suffer/ The adage goes: "work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion." In 1956, Cyril Northcote Parkinson coined the phrase as he observed the increase in the number of employees at the Colonial Office while the British Empire declined (Parkinson 1955). Ironically, the colonial bureaucracy kept growing at a... Continue Reading →

From the right numbers to the wrong outcomes

As soon as business students integrate their new school, welcome speeches pronounced by directors invite them as friends, allies and integral part of the corporate leadership to build the future of our society. The assumed purpose of these students’ formation is to acquire knowledge (concepts, models, theories) that can be applied in the context of... Continue Reading →

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